Anxiety And Achievement

Updated: Jan 14, 2019

Across the spectrum of introversion and extroversion this would rate pretty high on the list of experiences.

I can’t begin to tell you how cosmically different my life has changed after publishing the book and launching in Asia. With it comes the demands of promoting, producing more content, figuring out the business of publishing and its many facets.

Meeting so many new people, simultaneously perfecting and mentally editing my pitch and hiring people to help me lift the weights of distributing and promoting the book.

I find myself at 2am lording over a typo or not answering an important mail cause i am deeply afraid of success or ultimately being sat down to push out more of my ideas than I am ready to share.

It is a one woman show behind the scenes, the buck and supply chain kinks are my responsibility as the only aspect of quality control is a measure of deep faith that everyone and the products will be done to the highest quality possible. I'd hope.

It is truly pressure in spades.

I've come to accept my own limits; I risk immense burn out if I juggled everything plus staying creative which is the cornerstone of humansketchbooks existence. What's the point of all this if I can’t sit down and make things that are provocative and illuminating?

Here's the thing, anxiety serves as a hot iron rod to prod you to get stuff done, for a while it motivates and delivers some high-quality work. In acceptable doses, of course. It can be classified as the nervousness I get just before posting anything, 'will they like it?' Is this too much?'

The cutesy stuff, it doesn't matter how much experience you have, a bit of nerves is a healthy measure of care for the work you do and its ultimate output (whether it be a job, piece of art or writing).

Where it tends to get ugly is when you get bombarded with things to do that seemingly comes from everywhere and everyone all in one go.

That is when the to do list turns into a bulky old typewriter that falls down a staircase unapologetically loud and obnoxious. It sends you into a sloth coma that could last 10 minutes or 5 years (I stopped illustrating out of shear nerves at some point, feeling that everything I made was a fly infested pile of road kill).

So how the hell do you manage it? I don't think I’ll ever be able to answer that but, a thought or two can help.

I've certainly had a few, 'Jesus take the wheel' moments recently, however I also know that my imagination of the worst thing that can ever happen is also on par with ridiculous. No, I won't instantaneously combust and create a forest fire that would leave a gapping whole in the planet that would spew the earth core and kill everyone. BUT, I’d feel crap if i don’t get things done.

One - fear is just an imagination, so if you can conjure it, you can also put it in its place.

Two - so what? You didn't answer that email or finish that super important thing. You haven't made a dent in humanity, you happened to give yourself less time to figure stuff out.

Three - you get used to doing the hard things and many other things at the same time. In some aspect, you are building your stamina and expertise. Eventually you work out how to navigate a seemingly impossible task with some great friends and kind strangers to help (thanks YouTube). Being resourceful and Google savvy works.

Doing a little bit every day, helps. And one day, you'll get there.

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